Friday, June 12, 2015

Summer skirts







This week, the GB and I had an afternoon at home together. Her brother had gone to work on a project with Grandma at her house, so it was just us girls for a few hours. I had been hoping for a little time at the sewing machine, to sew a couple of summer skirts for her. It was a cloudy, damp day that seemed to warrant staying inside and making something. She said she'd like to help, so we spent the afternoon sewing.

We picked fabrics and thread first. She loves to look through my fabric stash. I think she'd spend all day poring over fabrics if she could (just like me). I gave her a few options and she chose these. (Both main fabrics are discontinued quilting cottons by Robert Kaufman; the blue is Bento Box Sushi Elements and the yellow is Little Kukla Floral Buttons. The gray dotted fabric on the sushi skirt is a calico from Hobby Lobby).

I did most of the sewing, of course, but she helped with pinning and carrying things back and forth between the sewing machine and ironing board. She got bored sometimes, retreating to the couch to read a book. Mostly, she watches. At six, she knows more about sewing than a lot of adults I've met. She's always liked to watch me at the sewing machine. I don't have a designated sewing space, really, so I usually bring my machine out to the kitchen table and work there. She sits in her chair at the table, right next to me, watching me sew, picking up dropped pins and throwing away cut threads.

She loves to watch me wind bobbins. She lines them up in their case in "rainbow order." It's important to her to have them just so. I think she believes I feel the same way about them so she wants to help me. The truth is, I did once care very much about "rainbow order." When I was her age, we had those rubber bracelets that we called Madonna bracelets, and I virtually never put them on without making sure they were perfectly ordered by color, red to purple, with black or silver or clear bracelets after the purple ones. She would adore Madonna bracelets, come to think of it.

After an hour or so, we had two finished skirts. They fit with room to spare (I like to get a year or two out of anything I sew for her to wear). She loves to twirl and these have enough gather to make them swirl out. She took them into her room and put them on the floor, then took shirts and tank tops out of her dresser to "match them up." She had a good ten different outfit options within a few minutes and truthfully, almost all of them looked really nice. She's set for summer, ready to take on the world in the skirts she'll tell you very proudly that she made.

Skirt design is inspired by Punkin Patterns' Easy-Peasy Skirts.

42 comments:

  1. The skirts are fab, Jennifer. I'm sure it won't be long until GB makes them all by herself! :o)

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  2. Beautiful skirts and such gorgeous fabrics. I can't imagine either of my girls wanting to wear something that came off my sewing machine! I bet a certain little girl will be wanting a machine of her very own in the none too distant future. xx

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  3. They're lovely well done both of you. My littlest boy likes to line up my pins in the pincushion while I sew. He likes me to make him a quilt. I shall start a new one soon no doubt. I hope you have a good weekend Jennifer. CJ xx

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  4. What a lovely time to spend with your daughter. Those skirts look so sweet and fit her perfectly. My girls are interested in my sewing and crafting too and they both say they want to learn when they're older. I think we'll start with simple weaving this summer. Hope you've had a fine week. Enjoy your weekend!

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  5. Sweet post. I love hearing how your daughter knows more about sewing than most adults. I find that so many of today's women and girls don't know how to even sew a button on or hem a pair of pants or a skirt. To me those are very basic items that both boys and girls should learn. My elder brother learned these things at home too but the youngest didn't. As for my sister and I, we were never the best seamstresses but we could always do basic things and took the usual high school courses. I think many students today don't take the sewing courses or even have the option so it's wonderful you can pass the skills to your daughter. She looks very cute in her new skirts too.

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  6. i"ll be seeing my grands this week.....getting their measurements and creating the minute I get home!!! Thanks for the link....these look pretty easy peasy....and the girls LOVE skirts. :)

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  7. Loved this post and love the little skirts. I am planning to make a few of these for my wee girl again this year too.
    Marianne x

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  8. Awe they are so pretty and lovely that your girl had a hand in making them. :)

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  9. Gorgeous skirts, and so lovely to have her helping you. Hope you guys have a great weekend.

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  10. The skirts are so cute! What a fun thing to do with GB!

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  11. Beautiful skirts, the fabric is delightful. it is so nice to spend time together making something passing on your skills. She'll be making you skirts next.... Have a great weekend.

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  12. They look lovely, so summery and bright. I used to love playing with my mum's old Singer sewing machine parts and sorting through buttons and threads.
    Unfortunately the sewing box became my 'vet's kit' and the poor cat often ended up with his legs 'bandaged' with wide elastic...

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  13. Gorgeous skirts - a very good afternoon's work! My daughter rarely wears skirts, mostly only on very special occasions. Lovely post Jennifer. Your daughter is a poppet.

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  14. These are so pretty and how lovely you made them together, so much more fun and interesting than clothes shopping. The GB will remember this afternoon and how sweet she is already matching up outfits, she is clearly developing an eye for colour, like mother like daughter!

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  15. It won't be long before GB will be running up her own skirts on the machine. I remember my daughter was so proud of her first homemade skirt at about 8 or 9 years old. We still have it even though she's 17 now! In the meantime those two skirts are adorable! X

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  16. So beautiful, this is what I want to do fro my little Miss!
    The fabric is so funny!
    Miss

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  17. Great little skirts, she looks gorgeous. Crafting time with the children is so special. x

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  18. Beautiful fabric, she has great taste. I was never interest in sewing when I was little even though my mum was a dressmaker. When dad gave me her sewing machine after she died, I surprised myself by how much I had taken in just by being around her when she sewed at the kitchen table. I still remember her sewing machine whirring away to this day. Lovely memories being stored up for your daughter. xx

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  19. They're really lovely, such pretty fabric, perfect for summer. I'm sure your daughter will be making her own skirts before too long.

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  20. So pretty! You are both such a talented pair! I really must blow the dust off my machine!! :-) Have a wonderful weekend xx

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  21. I like things in rainbow order too :-) Lovely skirts - the sushi print is adorable! x

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  22. Hi Jennifer
    I have sent you a little email.
    Marianne x

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  23. They are adorable Jennifer! And she looks so cute in them!!! You made me smile when you mentioned rainbow order...I remember doing that with m&ms! And how sweet that you both had this creating time together! The act of just being together while creating is so wonderful! Happy weekend lady! Nicole xoxo

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  24. Love the fabric of these skirts! I think it's so sweet how your little girl is learning to sew and having the pleasure of helping her mama with the sewing tasks. You can still get those 80's rubber bracelets on eBay, if you're interested. :-)

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  25. What really pretty skirts, Jennifer, and beautifully sewn. Quilting fabrics makes great children's clothes; I am currently making little boys shorts from fun quilting fabrics. It is great your little girl is so interested in your sewing. Have you started to teach her? She is old enough to start hand sewing, making simple dolls clothes with a bit of guidance. My mum taught me from age five, and it has stayed with me forever.

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    1. Thanks, Patricia. She's already doing lots of hand-sewing. She loves to practice her stitching. I'd like to teach her to use the machine, but she needs to get a little bit taller first. She can't reach the foot pedal yet. :)

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  26. Beautiful model in beautiful skirts. Even more special because you made them together xx

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  27. I love the skirts you made for your daughter the fabric choice is spot on x

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  28. You are such a nice momma to make your darling daughter such cute skirts! I never had enough clothes growing up and had to wear repeat outfits during the week of school.. so be sure and tell your daughter that she is very lucky. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  29. What lovely skirts, lovely fabric and a lovely model.

    All the best Jan

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  30. Lovely skirts! I do agree with GB that bobbins need to be ordered like the rainbow. I am just like that.... Have a good week. xx

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  31. What a lovely story behind the making of those beautiful little skirts. So pretty & very clever :)

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  32. So sweet - and what a lovely way to spend an afternoon with your daughter. x

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  33. They look great! I remember when my mother used to sew skirts and other clothes for me. It was really exciting to see how they'd turn out.

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  34. What adorable fabrics! I think that is great that your daughter enjoys watching you sew. She may look like she's just watching, but she's compiling data, I'm sure!

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  35. I believe your daughter knows more about sewing than I do. :) The skirts are adorable. The sushi fabric is fabulous! I know she is very proud to wear them.

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  36. They're beautiful, just like the model, and so practical too. I find shop bought skirts too short for Bella, as she's tall and very slender - if they fit her waist, they're indecently short. It occurs to me that I should make her some. I'm now fantasising about a summer holiday fabric shopping /sewing day... Xx

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    1. Thanks, Gillian. These were so easy. I've made about six or seven skirts like this in the past couple of years. E is very small for her age and every dress or skirt in the store is too long, so it's nice to be able to adjust for it when I make them myself. They're all so different, these kidlets. :)

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  37. I hope GB absorbs your interest in and talent for sewing, Jennifer. My mom sewed most of the clothing I wore, and I regret now that I did not spend more time learning to sew. My adult sewing efforts have been rather frightful thus far :) xx

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  38. I think children get a huge amount of comfort from just being near their parents when something is being made. I remember standing beside my nana as she made pancakes (she turned 95 this week by the way, and is still baking), or beside my mum when she was cooking (she's still a fabulous cook). The skirts you made are just beuriful Jennifer,Mao summery and girlish, really sweet X

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